"All in all, the CMA (AAMA) credential is assuming increasing importance in the eyes of all types of employers of medical assistants."

Donald Balasa, JD, MBA 

Why more employers are hiring CMAs (AAMA)

What is the CMA?

The CMA (AAMA) credential designates a medical assistant who has achieved certification through the Certifying Board of the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). The credential is awarded to candidates who pass the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination. The CMA (AAMA) has been educated and tested in a wide scope of general, clinical, and administrative responsibilities as outlined in the Occupational Analysis of the CMA (AAMA).

Every day the AAMA responds to more than 100 employer requests for CMA (AAMA) certification verification—for both current and potential employees. 

Many factors combine to create a driving force for an increased demand for medical assistants who have current CMA (AAMA) certification:

  • Legal perils
  • Managed care pressures
  • State and federal laws (e.g., OSHA and CLIA)
  • Qualification for entering orders for the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Program
  • Private sector bodies (e.g., Joint Commission and NCQA)

Read why more employers are hiring CMAs here

The CMA (AAMA) Exam is a rigorous exam that requires a thorough, broad, and current understanding of health care delivery. The exam consists of 200 multiple-choice questions administered in four 40-minute segments. The CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination Content Outline provides an overview of the wide scope of knowledge required in general, clinical, and administrative categories.

Am I eligible to take the exam?

Read more about exam eligibility here

When should I apply and take the exam?

The exam may be taken throughout the year at a Prometric testing center (open eight to 10 hours per day, five to six days a week) of your choice. Each candidate is allowed a 90-day period in which to take the exam. Your 90-day testing period will be assigned based on the testing period start date you indicate on your application. 

About to complete your externship and graduate with your MA? Completing students may take the exam no more than 30 days prior to completing their formal education, including a practicum.

What is the cost?

If you are a member of the AAMA or a CAAHEP or ABHES completing student or recent graduate, your fee is $125. All others pay $250. If your credential has expired, you will pay an additional $50 reactivation fee.

All fees are nonrefundable and nontransferable.

Personal checks will not be accepted. Candidate fees must be paid by any of the following methods:

  • Money order
  • Credit card
  • Debit card
  • Cashier's check
  • Certified check
  • Institution check

Applications submitted without proper fee payment will delay scheduling of your exam appointment or may be returned to you.

Membership in the AAMA gives you great benefits that will help you on your career path. Discover these benefits and join today.

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